In the wake of Gulf crisis, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Monday sought the Centre’s intervention to ensure the safety of 6.5 lakh Indians, including Keralites, residing in Qatar. Vijayan wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, Vijayan said he was writing the letter in the context of the developing geopolitical situation in the Middle East on Monday.
“As you are aware millions of Indians are working in countries in the Middle East and therefore the geopolitical developments in the region have raised deep concerns among the people in the state since each family has at least one family member or a relative in the region,” he said.
“I would like to place on record the full support of our state to the considered stance that Union government would take on the issue, given the complexities involved,” he said. He added that the state was aware that the Centre would come out with the “most appropriate diplomatic and geo- political stance” in this regard taking into consideration all aspects and put in place a “robust mechanism” for addressing all the concerns.
Vijayan also wanted the Indian Embassy in Doha to be “suitably empowered” to respond presciently to the concerns of the Indian community in the country.
On Monday, Arab nations including Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain severed their ties with Qatar, accusing the latter of destabilising the region. The move comes amid Qatar’s alleged backing for Islamist movements and its perceived tolerance of Saudi Arabia’s rival, Iran. These countries have also announced plans to stop all land, air and sea traffic with Qatar, which said measures were unjustified.